Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara to deliver Royal Academy's annual lecture | AARB Magazine

Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara to deliver Royal Academy’s annual lecture

Dezeen promotion: Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara of Grafton Architects will give the annual Royal Academy of Arts architecture lecture on “freespace”, the theme they chose for this year’s Venice Architecture Biennale.

The Grafton Architects founders will deliver the 28th Annual Architecture Lecture in the new David Chipperfield-designed The Benjamin West Lecture Theatre at the Royal Academy of Arts on 16 July 2018.

Dezeen is media partner for this year’s lecture, a prestigious series that has previously featured architects including Alvaro Siza, Peter Zumthor, Wang Shu and Balkrishna Vithaldas Doshi.

Farrell and McNamara will use their lecture to explore “freespace”. They define this as a “generosity of spirit and a sense of humanity, something that is at the core of architecture’s agenda, focusing on the quality of space itself”.

In 2016, the Royal Institute of British Architects awarded its inaugural RIBA International Prize to the practice’s concrete university campus in Peru. Photograph is by Iwan Baan

It is the theme they selected as curators of the 16th Venice Architecture Biennale, which opens on 26 May 2018.

The pair founded their practice Grafton Architects in Dublin in 1978. They have built extensively in Ireland but in recent years commissions have taken their work further afield.

In 2016, the Royal Institute of British Architects awarded its inaugural RIBA International Prize to their concrete university campus in Peru, and in 2018 the studio received the RIAI Triennial Gold Medal for Architecture 2007-2009 for its Universita Luigi Bocconi in Milan.

Grafton Architects is also working on a new faculty building for the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in Holborn, London.

The studio received the RIAI Triennial Gold Medal for Architecture 2007-2009 for its Universita Luigi Bocconi in Milan

Farrell and McNamara have also held numerous teaching positions. They have taught at the University College of Dublin for over forty years, and are currently professors the Accademia di Architettura of Mendrisio.

Tickets for the lecture are available from the Royal Academy and cost £25, or £15 for concessions.

The Royal Academy’s annual architecture lecture coincides with the institution’s Summer Exhibition – one of the biggest events in the UK’s art and design calendar. The ticket price for the lecture includes a drinks reception and access to the show.

For more information, visit the Royal Academy’s website.

Portrait is by Alice Clancy.

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